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Sharky Extreme : Monthly Extreme Gaming PC Buyer's Guide April 15, 2008


 
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    November Extreme Gaming PC Buyer's Guide
    By Thomas Soderstrom :  November 10, 2006

    Price Roundup


    Intel Core 2 Duo System:

    Case: Cooler Master CM Stacker 830 - $240
    PSU: PC Power & Cooling Silencer 610 - $160
    CPU: Core 2 Duo X6700 (2.66 GHz) Retail - $500
    Cooling: Thermalright Ultra 120 - $60
    Fan: Scythe S-Flex 1200RPM - $20
    Motherboard: Foxconn 975X7AB-8EKRS2H - $180
    Memory: 2GB (2x1GB) Corsair XMS2 6400C4 - $300
    Hard Drive: 2 x Seagate 7200.10 320GB - $200
    Video Card: Radeon X1950XTX + X1950 CrossFire - $820
    Monitor: Samsung SyncMaster 215TW 21-inch LCD - $460
    Sound Card: Creative Sound Blaster X-Fi Fatal1ty FPS - $175
    Speakers: Logitech Z-5500 5.1 Digital - $260
    CD/DVD-RW: LG Electronics GSA-H22N - $30
    NIC: Included - $0
    Modem: Zoom Telephonics 2920- $75
    Mouse: Logitech G5 Laser Mouse - $50
    Keyboard: Logitech G15 Gaming Keyboard - $60
    Gamepad: Saitek P3000 Wireless Pad - $35
    Operating System: Windows XP Pro w/ SP2 - $90
    UPS: CyberPower CP900AVR - $90

    Total: $3,805


    AMD Athlon 64 X2 System:

    Case: Cooler Master CM Stacker 830 - $240
    PSU: PC Power & Cooling Silencer 610 - $160
    CPU: AMD Athlon 64 FX-62 Retail - $720
    Cooling: Thermalright Ultra 120 (with AM2 kit) - $67
    Fan: Scythe S-Flex 1200RPM - $20
    Motherboard: MSI K9A Platinum - $135
    Memory: 2GB (2x1GB) Corsair XMS2 6400C4 - $300
    Hard Drive: 2 x Seagate 7200.10 320GB - $200
    Video Card: Radeon X1950XTX + X1950 CrossFire - $820
    Monitor: Samsung SyncMaster 215TW 21-inch LCD - $460
    Sound Card: Creative Sound Blaster X-Fi Fatal1ty FPS - $175
    Speakers: Logitech Z-5500 5.1 Digital - $260
    CD/DVD-RW: LG Electronics GSA-H22N - $30
    NIC: Included - $0
    Modem: Zoom Telephonics 2920- $75
    Mouse: Logitech G5 Laser Mouse - $50
    Keyboard: Logitech G15 Gaming Keyboard - $60
    Gamepad: Saitek P3000 Wireless Pad - $35
    Operating System: Windows XP Pro w/ SP2 - $90
    UPS: CyberPower CP900AVR - $90

    Total: $3,987


    Closing Remarks

    AMD and Intel have always followed each other's lead in processor pricing, but this has changed big time with the release of Intel's Core 2 processors: AMD's top model is no longer as fast as Intel's, so it's also no longer priced similarly. Yet choosing AMD's top and Intel's second-from-top CPU allows both systems to retain most of the same hardware. It's unfortunate that with these selections, the Intel system will be both faster and less expensive.

    Several model cycles might pass before games are able to use four cores, an unfortunate problem for AMD as its current hopes are pinned on better-than-Intel quad-core performance. At least we won't have to take money away from graphics in order to pay for these higher-priced processors.

    The floppy drive was finally ditched, and it's probably time to drop the modem as well. Doing so wouldn't have saved enough money to change our CPU or graphics card selection, but we're sure we'd find a place to spend it eventually. We also look forward to NVIDIA's 8800 series graphics card and a new SLI-compatible chipset for Intel, two technologies that could shift a wider selection of components in our next Extreme Buyer's Guide.

    * Please note that prices do not include variable charges like taxes or shipping The prices in our guide reflect market availability - generally the second or third lowest we found - in an attempt to minimize the financial burden associated with choosing multiple vendors.


    Page 1 Introduction and Case
    Page 2 Processors and Cooling
    Page 3 Motherboards and Memory
    Page 4 Hard Drives and DVD-R/RW
    Page 5 Video Card, LCD Display and Audio
    Page 6 Mouse, Keyboard & Controller
    Page 7 Communications, Operating System, etc.
  • Page 8 Price Roundup and Closing Remarks

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